Utah Star Timmy Allen returns and withdraws from the NBA Draft.

The Utes leading scorer has decided to return to Utah for his junior season. The Forward enjoyed a big season statistically but he dropped vastly in efficiency. Given he did shoot the ball nearly double the amount of times as compared to the previous season, he only made 62 more shots on all those extra attempts. There were points last season where Rylan Jones had to leave some games hurt, as did Both Gach, so that put a lot on Allen’s plate but he forced a good amount of shots. When you have 2 elite shooters like Rylan Jones and Alphonso Plummer you should kick it out to them more when going into a crowded lane.

Allen is a solid free throw shooter at 72% and he got a lot of points from the line, he was there 6.7 times per game. Allen is very strong and good rebounder, grabbing 7.3 per game. I’d have to guess that NBA scouts weren’t sure what position he’s going to play at the next level. He’s not a guard in my opinion, he’s not a good enough shooter to be a wing guy, but he’s too small to be a 5. He’s a guy that unless he can figure out shooting he’s not going to really translate to the NBA but can be great overseas. I like his tools as a player but he needs to improve, so I’m glad he opted to return. Consistency is the key for Allen also, as he looks to improve greatly for this season.

Here’s the Utes lineup going into next season:

PG- Rylan Jones

SG- Ian Martinez

SF- Alphonso Plummer

PF- Timmy Allen

C- Branden Carlson

Bench: Riley Battin, Jaxon Brenchley, Lahat Thioune, Pelle Larson, Mason Faisvel

Jones is a great shooter and passer, he shot 38% from deep and had 4.5 assists a game last season. He’s very good at running the offense and dumping it to Timmy Allen. He’s 6’0” and 175 pounds, he’s super slender and I would like to see him bulk up a bit, his lack of strength hurts him on defense, especially when he needs to fight through screens.

Jones is a great facilitator and shooter, but due to his lack of size and strength he gets beat often defensively. Jones should continue to develop as a player throughout the next season.

Ian Martinez is a very athletic 6’3” combo guard who will be a 2-guard for the Utes. Hopefully he can knock down three’s at good level but there’s upside.

Alphonso Plummer wasn’t used enough last season, he’s a JUCO product who shot 42% from deep and is a lefty. He had 35 Points in the lone PAC-12 Tournament game the Utes played before the season was canceled. Plummer shot 11-16 from three in that game, I’m not saying he can do that again but he can be very productive going forward.

Branden Carlson is one of my favorite players to watch he’s a 7’0” player who can block everything in existence. He needs to add more weight and develop as a scorer but has a super high ceiling.

The Utes haven’t made the NCAA Tournament since 2016 and while I’m not sure they’ll be able to make it this year, they definitely have a chance to end that string of missed NCAA Tournament appearances.

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